Sexual misconduct by clergy and church workers
• Key point. A minor's "consent" to a sexual relationship with a youth pastor is no defense to liability.
• Key point. Churches may be liable for a pastor's sexual misconduct on the basis of a breach of a fiduciary duty, but only if a fiduciary relationship exists between the victim and church.
• Key point. Churches and denominational agencies cannot be sued by victims of sexual misconduct as a result their alleged failure to abide by their internal rules and policies with respect to the discipline of ministers.
A Colorado court addressed the liability of a church and denominational agency for a sexual relationship between a youth pastor and a girl in his youth group. A 12—year—old girl (the "victim") was encouraged by her youth pastor to discuss with him any problems she had. Though reluctant at first, she eventually ...